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How Does Geography and Climate Affect Clothing?

Discussion in 'World Building' started by D. Gray Warrior, Jul 27, 2017.

  1. D. Gray Warrior

    D. Gray Warrior Troubadour

    How does climate and geography affect what people wear and what materials they have available?

    What would people wear in the mountains, does a tropical environment necessarily lead to tribes with less covered than those in a temperate, hot, or cold climate?

    What materials would be available in the mountains and in the desert?
  2. TheKillerBs

    TheKillerBs Inkling

    Needs additional pylons information. But to answer the specific question: "does a tropical environment necessarily lead to tribes with less covered than those in a temperate, hot, or cold climate?"

    No. Not necessarily. If you live in a semi-arid tropical region with little vegetation, you may want to be completely covered because the tropical sun is hot and it burns.
  3. Saigonnus

    Saigonnus Auror

    I would say yes. Climate affects clothing. Cold weather equals more clothing, or at least thicker clothing.

    It also tends to dictate what sort of animals/crops you can use. Goats are probably more common in warm climates than sheep. Cotton grows better in warm climates than flax does, at least I believe so.

    I would think tropical tribes would wear next to nothing, at least while at home. While tribes in colder climates might don fur-lined cloaks and boots treated with seal fat.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  4. elemtilas

    elemtilas Sage

    Mostly what affects what people wear is what kind of people you're asking about.

    Are these people human or something else? And what might that something else be? In The World for example, Daine are pretty cold hardy. They wear little more than a few bangles, some fetching body paint and perhaps a sarong-like garment around the waist. Their feet have tough soles and their feathers are pretty water resistant, so they don't mind weather and climate too much. Socially and culturally there are broadly speaking no tabus against nudity, so people might be clothed or nude or somewhere in between depending on mood or tasks & chores being done.

    If we stick with humans, they can thrive in many environments pretty much naked. Environments as varied as Amazonia and Tierra del Fuego sport(ed) human people in pretty much their pristine, uncovered state.

    Beyond that, I'd bet environment, protection and culture are the three biggest culprits of causing fashion. Just because you're ordinarily naked doesn't mean you always want to be soaked by rain, so you invent broad peaked caps, parapluies and capes. You don't your feet and hands to get cut up during agricultural work, so you invent shoes and gloves. You want to protect sensitive parts of your body, so you invent the loincloth. Girls with big chests get tired of lugging a pair of bouncing melons around, so they invent strophia. Sooner or later some cultured chap decides that berry juice stains can be applied decoratively and thus invents the sarong.
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017
  5. skip.knox

    skip.knox toujours gai, archie Moderator

    It's certainly worth wondering if climate affects what dwarves, elves, orcs, etc. wear differently than it does humans.
  6. K.S. Crooks

    K.S. Crooks Inkling

    The purpose of clothing is to help maintain body temperature, water level and other homeostasis conditions. Climate and geography are the factors that determine the type of clothes needed and available. The average seasonal temperature, the amount of sunlight and precipitation dictate that amount of covering required. These factors also determine the types of plants and animals an area can support. Excluding synthetic materials, the type of clothing a person can make is reliant in the plants and animals found in their area. Trade routes would expand the resources available and create greater options. For a particular region you need to know/decide what the climate and geography are like and what species live in the area.

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